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|Works Informed by Artist's September 11th Experiences
on view at Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art
| The solo exhibition Acquisitions in Context: June Ahrens features the sculpture Still Standing (2010) and the installation Hiding in Plain Site (2008). The premiere of Still Standing, added to the Permanent Collection of the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art in 2010, is timed to coincide with the 10th anniversary of 9-11. The experiences of that fateful day—June Ahrens was living in Lower Manhattan—have become a philosophical touchstone and conceptual framework for her artistic production. The exhibition is on view September 9–December 24, 2011, at the Kemper Museum. Admission is free.
|Ahrens has for many years transformed the everyday into the poetic; materials she uses have included fiberglass, felt, safety pins, wire mesh and hot glue. In the post-9-11 works on view, the primary materials used by Ahrens are broken and reconfigured glass jars (Still Standing) and broken and layered Plexiglas (Hiding in Plain Site) that creates a circular pool of refracted light. The experience of Hiding in Plain Site is immersive; a theatrical light mounted to the ceiling slowly spins throwing reflections first onto the walls of the gallery and then onto the viewer.|
|A belief in the power of art to offer a place of meditation and healing is powerfully present in these works of art. Loss, pain, fragility and danger play roles in Ahrens’ sculpture and installation-based works. The dynamic interplay of both the industrial and the everyday evokes memories of use and new beginnings.||Above:June Ahrens, Still Standing, 2010; reclaimed jars, glass, aluminum, 24 x 72 x 30 in.; Collection of the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art|
|Ahrens attained a B.F.A. from the State University of New York in 1988. She has received grants from the Connecticut Commission on the Arts, Polaroid Foundation Grant, and National Endowment for the Arts, among others. Her works have been included in numerous group and solo exhibitions around the United States as well as in Scotland and Sweden. The exhibition at the Kemper Museum is the artist’s first in the Midwest. Ahrens lives in New Canaan, Connecticut.|
|This is the third in a series of exhibitions, called Acquisitions in Context, at the Kemper Museum. This focused exhibition pairs new works to the Kemper Museum’s Permanent Collection with others by the same artist. This allows visitors to see more works by the artist and makes more transparent the process by which works of art enter the Museum’s collection. Since the Museum’s opening in 1994, the Permanent Collection has more than tripled.|
Film Screening: Objects and Memory (2008)
Tour and Workshop: Memories in the Making
Lecture: Stages of Memory in Berlin and New York After 9/11
About the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art
Kemper at the Crossroads (33 West 19th Street) is open noon–8:00 p.m., Friday and noon–6:00 p.m. Saturday. Admission is free.
The Museum (4420 Warwick Blvd.) is open 10:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m., Tuesday–Thursday; 10:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m., Friday–Saturday; and 11:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m., Sunday. Café Sebastienne serves lunch 11:00 a.m.–2:30 p.m., Tuesday–Sunday; and dinner 5:30–9:30 p.m., Friday–Saturday. The Museum and Café are closed on Mondays and major holidays. Admission is free.
The galleries of Kemper East (200 E. 44th Street) are open 10:00 a.m.–4 p.m., Tuesday–Friday. Admission is free.
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